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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - February 26, 1975, Lethbridge, Alberta Wednesday, February 26, 1975 THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD 41 Success story Tommy Shoyama moves from internment camp to top Ottawa job By VICTOR MACKIE Herald Ottawa Bureau OTTAWA From intern- ment camp to the second most powerful job in the Canadian public service! It's quite a success story. It's the story of Tommy K. Shoyama, 59 year old Japanese Canadian, who has been appointed deputy minister of Finance. He was one of four eminently qualified men in the running for that influential post. That internment carnp was not a German or Japanese camp. It was a Canadian camp. A shameful chapter in (he Canadian history of the Se- cond -World War when the government at Ottawa panick- ed over cries of alarm from British Columbia. Fearful over the threat to the Pacific shores posed by the expanding Japanese Em- pire the Canadian government issued instructions that Japanese Canadians were to be moved out of their homes and off their farms into the in- terior. Tommy Shoyama was one of those uprooted and forced to move to a detention camp. The official govern- ment biography issued with his new appointment glosses over that period. It says without explanation that from 1939 to 1945 he was editor and publisher of the semi weekly newspaper "The New Canadian" publish- ed in Vancouver and Kasio, B.C. Kaslo was the site of the detention camp. Today Tommy Shoyama doesn't like to talk about that period. The tensions of war and the fears of invasion made Canadians and others take actions that after three decades of peace seem unbelievable. It's a story that Finance Minister John Turner likes to tell as an illustration of the exceptional qualities of his new deputy. The appointment has been universally welcomed in the finance department. "He's back and we're glad of said one official. Another recalled how when the retir- ing deputy--minister Simon Reisman summoned key ad- visers in the department to sit down around the table for a bull session in advance of the 'Pert', knowing how we girls love something to wear with a brand new look, obliged with enchanting coordinates. 'A' to 'E', that will practically charm the birds out of the corn fields! Fashions, them of nylon- acrylic double knit in faded denim blue wiih deep blue trim, belts. For great go-alongs. a gingham check shirt F', and turtleneck pullover 'G'. in soft nylon knit. All items machine-washable-dryable All items, except where otherwise specified, sizes 7. The Scarecrow' Coords: a. Hooded jacket; appliqued pouch. 8to14.77R004959 511.98 b. Pants-with vinyl bell, elastic waist. 77R 004 638 c. Big-fashion vest in sizes 8 to 14. 77R004888S6.98 d. Skirt with vinyl belt, elastic waist. 77R 004 826 58.98 e- Salopette with zip front, vinyl bell. 77R 004 666 516.98 Go-Along Toppers f. nylon check shirt in 77R 009 878 g. Ribbed nylon turtleneck in yellow. 8-14. 77R 004 916 53.98 Giils'Waar Simpsons-Sears Ltd. STORE HOURS: Open Dally a.m. to p.m. Thursday and Friday a.m. to p.m. Centre Village Mall. Telephone 328-9231 Enjoy it now! Use your All Purpose Account. At Simpsons-Sears you get the finest guarantee Satisfaction or money refunded. preparation of the last budget, he asked: "Are we all here." came the response. "Who's asked Simon. came the reply and the deputy had to ruefully agree that the tough minded, pragmatic Tommy Shoyama was indeed sorely missed. He had been promoted to the post of deputy minister of energy, mines and resources. A quiet, soft spoken deter- mined man who has built a solid reputation in federal government circles for his sound advice and good decisions Tommy Shoyama came from a working class environment. A graduate of the University of British Columbia like his minister.'he served a year in Canadian Army Intelligence after the war. He then embarked on a career in government joining the Saskatchewan CCF ad- ministration headed by T. C. Douglas. It was the first socialist government in North America and as such was regarded as an exciting oppor- tunity for young, eager would be government economists. Today Tommy Douglas has an affectionate regard for the diminutive Japanese Canadian. Several civil ser- vants reared in government service under Tommy Douglas left the province to take jobs in Ottawa when the late Ross Thatcher was elected Liberal premier supplanting the -New Democratic Party government. They are fondly labelled the "Saskatchewan Mafia" by federal Liberals and led Thatcher to believe the Ottawa Grits had gone too far "Tommy" as he is fondly known in finance, has come a long way since making his move to the big league. First he was a senior economist with the Economic Council. Three years later in 1967 he transferred to the federal finance department as direc- tor of the fiscal policy division. One year later he was appointed assistant depu- ty minister of federal provin- cial relations in the department. In 1973 he headed the inter departmental task force for the Western Economic Opportunities Conference a tough assisgnment. When energy problems became all consuming in 1974 he was named deputy minister of the department of energy, mines and resources. The finance boys were sorry to lose him and are happy to get him back. After all, they say, energy is important but more important is the job of deputy finance minister. And he was the best available man for the job when Simon Reisman announced his deci- sion to retire to private life. He will be second only to Michael Pitfield in that 000 a year top bracket of the public service elite. Pitfield, a close friend of the prime minister, is clerk of the privy council. The prime minister came under sharp criticism for his appointment of Mr. Pitfield. He has won praise for naming Mr. Shoyama. Soft spoken and unobtrusive he is the opposite of the man he succeeds, cigar chewing, outspoken and aggressive Simon Reisman. The retiring deputy as he prepares to depart at the end of March told his minister that the burden on the deputy was becoming too heavy for one man. He was losing his zest for the job and decided it was time to get out. To ease that heavy burden S. "Bill" Hood has been named to the new post of associate deputy minister of finance. A brilliant man who some unhesitatingly label a Dr. Hood will help Mr. Shoyama carry the load that is becoming increasingly complex. The new deputy finance minister's hobby is growing flowers, he is one of the "green thumb" group. He also has a reputation for being a good poker player, at least provincial deputies dealing with the low-key, self effac- ing federal man know him as a good poker player. The in- scrutable -face has perplexed them in more than one tough bargaining session. Finally the Shoyama ap- pointment has found great favour among the vigorous op- ponents of tho government's Green Paper on immigration. WHITE 318 -6th St. South Phone 329-3646 Lethbridge. 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